3 biggest keys to victory for Real Madrid vs. Barcelona in El Clasico

Real Madrid, Vinicius Jr.(Photo by Cristian Trujillo/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)
Real Madrid, Vinicius Jr.(Photo by Cristian Trujillo/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images) /
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Real Madrid, Fede Valverde
Real Madrid, Fede Valverde (Photo by Silvestre Szpylma/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images) /

Fede Valverde needs to play at RW over Marco Asensio

Maybe this is a controversial take, but if Rodrygo Goes is not 100 percent after taking a knock against Mallorca, then Marco Asensio should not be the next man up. Despite my misgivings about the player after his embarrassing displays in two important matches against PSG, it does make sense for Asensio to be the main option for an injured Rodrygo in most circumstances. But not this one.

Real Madrid need defensive work, ball-winning, and ball-carrying against an active, young, and fiery Barcelona side. La Blaugrana right now under Xavi are a different animal compared to what Real have faced in the past Clasicos, and Los Merengues must be prepared with Fede Valverde as their own counterweight.

Valverde has come up with the goods time after time on the biggest stage, no matter the position. We even saw him shine at right back in the Champions League against Liverpool last season, and he did that while injured!

On multiple occasions, Fede has been a Barcelona-killer for Real Madrid. He is a right center midfielder and not a right winger, but he can offer a lot in that wide role in combination with Luka Modric in the midfield. And we know how much Dani Carvajal could use the extra help on the right side – Barcelona’s left side, with Ferran Torres always a danger to the Royal Whites, is not one to take lightly.

It is hard to fit Valverde in that midfield with the vaunted KCM trio, but this is a way to get Valverde involved. He has the attributes that can provide the matchwinning difference for Real Madrid on Sunday night at the Bernabeu.